The Queen of My Self

The Queen of My Self

Happy New Year!

posted by Donna Henes

New Year is a return to the eternal beginnings. Back to where there is only hope and promise and enthusiastic, well-intentioned energy. Back to the original big bang back seat cosmic conception. Back to the future. New Year is the birthday of everything. In accordance with this understanding, New Year’s Day throughout Asia, is celebrated as everybody’s birthday. Everyone within society is automatically one year older all at the same time. Older and ostensibly wiser.

The time of the Great Turning is critical, for it creates the ambient atmosphere and attitude for the entire year, decade, century to come. The period preceding the actual New Year is typically devoted to reflection, repentance, restitution, resolution and focus on rebirth. Once a year, on New Year, or on our birthday, we take the time, make the commitment, to confront our true selves. To think about the intention and direction of our lives. To evaluate our progress. To assess our sins and redress the wrongs of our own doing. To promote positive personal change. To cultivate compassionate forgiveness, understanding, and acceptance of ourselves, and empathy for others so that we might truly begin anew with a clean slate.
       
The New Year rituals of many lands enact a literal removal of the old year and an attendant readiness for the new. At Asura, the Moroccan New Year, the figure of the mythical being, Baba Aisor,The Old Year, is buried in the earth. Similarly, in Ecuador, effigies of the old year, Año Viejo,are constructed from clothes stuffed with straw and then burned at midnight on New Year’s Eve. In Laos, the Goddess of the Old Year departs on the last day, leaving the people for one full, dangerous day before Her replacement arrives. Today, in the West, the old year is personified by Old Man Time who limps out leaning on his scythe. He exits upon the arrival of the brand new baby year, scattering the used pages of the old calendar behind him.

In a grand operatic out-with-the-old-and-in-with-the-new gesture, Italians throw all the belongings that they no longer want out of their windows on New Year’s Eve. Everything from used bars of soap to broken sofas is dispatched with abandon. In a more tame tradition, symbolic of the same spirit, the Mayans replace all of their articles of every day use. And in many Native American cultures, in both the Northern and Southern Hemisphere, hearth fires are extinguished and ritually rekindled. On Songkran, Thai New Year, birds are released from their cages to fly free and bowls of fish are returned to the rivers. In Japan, all debts are paid.

All over the world houses are scrubbed and walkways are swept clean. In old England, New Year’s Day was the annual sweeping of all chimneys. The expression “to make a clean sweep” comes from this custom. Moroccans pour water over themselves, their animals, the floors and walls of their homes, and in Wales, children scatter water over the houses of their neighbors in order to bless them. At New Year in Bengal, pilgrims bathe in the River Ganges. The Cherokee spend the eve of the New Year in vigil on the banks of a river. At dawn they immerse themselves seven times, emerging purified and new like the year.

The old year never goes out with a whimper. Worldwide, the great turning of the year is greeted with raucous noise, which effectively shatters and scatters any evil spirits lurking about. Jews sound a ram’s horn strong enough to cause the walls of Jericho to come tumbling down. The Chinese set off fireworks in the streets. Hungarian herdsmen crack their whips to turn the year as they would their herds. In Denmark, people smash all the year’s broken crockery against the doors of their friends in a New Year benediction. In cities across America, drunken men gather on rooftops and shoot their firearms into the sky.

As the moment of the New Year approaches, Igbo children dash home and bolt themselves inside so that they won’t be carried off by the old year. They bang on the door and wail the whole while, joining the village-wide loud lament. Tibetan magicians perform New Year exorcism dances wearing demons masks, brandishing daggers and beating skull drums. At midnight New Year’s Eve in Japan, the watch gong rings out 108 times to purge the 108 human weaknesses describes by Buddha.

On New Year’s Eve, bells, horns, whistles, and sirens ring all over the world, sending shrill cheers into the middle of the night for the grand changing of the annual guard.

In the first week of this New Year, may we all together chant, sing, shout our vision for a world of peace, understanding and goodwill among all people. May women lead the way toward a global healing for people, nations and our mutual Mother Earth.
         
***
The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

CONSULT THE MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™
Queen Mama Donna offers upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

This Is A Test

posted by Donna Henes

Dear Sister Queens,

Beliefnet has had a bit of a techno glitch and my blogs have not been posted as per normal this week. So sorry about that.

This post is a test.

We hope to be back to normal tomorrow, Thursday, January 6, 2011. Please tune in then to resume our royal entries.

In the meantime, I want to wish each and every one of you a wonder filled year,

xxQueen Mama Donna

Imagine A Woman

posted by Donna Henes

The last line of yesterday’s post, “The Decade of the Woman is Upon Us,” was “I’m imagining a world run cooperatively by conscious men and women. How about you?” What a wonderful segue to this well known and well loved poem, the final post of the year.

Let us ring in the New Year and the New Decade with this declaration of Self-esteem and sovereignty on our minds and in our hearts.

Imagine A Woman
By Patricia Lynn Reilly
 

Imagine a woman who believes it is right and good she is a woman.
A woman who honors her experience and tells her stories.
Who refuses to carry the sins of others within her body and life.

Imagine a woman who believes she is good.
A woman who trusts and respects herself.
Who listens to her needs and desires, and meets them with tenderness and grace.

Imagine a woman who has acknowledged the past’s influence on the present.
A woman who has walked through her past.
Who has healed into the present.

Imagine a woman who authors her own life.
A woman who exerts, initiates, and moves on her own behalf.
Who refuses to surrender except to her truest self and to her wisest voice.

Imagine a woman who names her own gods.
A woman who imagines the divine in her image and likeness.
Who designs her own spirituality and allows it to inform her daily life.

Imagine a woman in love with her own body.
A woman who believes her body is enough, just as it is.
Who celebrates her body and its rhythms and cycles as an exquisite resource.

Imagine a woman who honors the face of the Goddess in her changing face.
A woman who celebrates the accumulation of her years and her wisdom.
Who refuses to use precious energy disguising the changes in her body and life.

Imagine a woman who values the women in her life.
A woman who sits in circles of women.
Who is reminded of the truth about herself when she forgets.

Imagine yourself as this woman.  

***
The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

CONSULT THE MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™
Queen Mama Donna offers upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

The Decade of the Woman Is Upon Us – Part 2

posted by Donna Henes

The Decade of the Woman Is Upon Us – Continued
By Marcia Reynolds

Men created the companies, the leadership models and the systems that are breaking down in today’s world. Here in the United States, the rate of change is so pitiful that I am afraid for my country. I think our best shot is to quit trying to fix the old way and look to create an exciting, collaboration-based, innovation-run new way. Since it will only be a few years before women will outnumber men in the workplace, in degrees held and in privately held companies in the United States, shouldn’t the executive staff of our major corporations strive to mirror the workplace and consumer base? Corporate leaders should start by asking women to help draw up the plans for the future of management. It’s time let go and move on.

And if the leaders don’t ask for our help, let’s do it ourselves.

We also have to focus more on politics. Female representation is sorely lacking. Again, shouldn’t our leadership mirror its base? Even if they are conscious, I don’t count on male leaders to understand my needs and fight on my behalf. If politics is bad, then let’s stand together to change it with a fresh spate of strong progressive female candidates.

We don’t have to compete with men or participate with them on their terms. We can create and live by our own expression of business, leadership, community and family. This doesn’t mean we exclude men. We move forward when:

    * We model inclusion and collaboration, which is our way.

    * We don’t back down when we aren’t acknowledged.

    * We create businesses and communities based on our own rules.

Our capacity to love, to allow, to express emotion and to create beautiful spaces to live and work in should attract people, regardless of gender or age.

Do you think this is a fantasy? I believe there are many men who prefer mutual respect over domination. I travel the world for my work; I see these men growing in numbers around the world.

The numbers are in our favor. I’m imagining a world run cooperatively by conscious men and women. How about you?

Wishing all Queens everywhere the presence, purpose, passion and power to create a world that serves our needs and that supports the well being of Mother Earth and all of Her creations. Happy New Year. Happy New Decade. Happy New Era!

***
The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

CONSULT THE MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™
Queen Mama Donna offers upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

 

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